• Ten Castles that Made Medieval Britain: Pembroke Castle

    While Caernarvon was the ultimate manifestation of Anglo-Norman occupied Wales wrought into stone and mortar, Pembroke was its beating heart. Today ensconced upon a spur of rock, the Cleddau estuary flowing gently by, Pembroke Castle stands still, its long shadow silent and serene.

    Ten Castles that Made Medieval Britain: Pembroke Castle
  • Medieval Empires

    Throughout the medieval era, many multi-ethnic states emerged – some lasting for just a generation, while others would endure for centuries. Here is our list of twenty empires from the Middle Ages, starting with the most successful.

    Medieval Empires
  • Final Month to See British Library’s Magna Carta Exhibit

    It’s August, and summer has begun its inevitable wind down. Unfortunately, this means the British Library’s spectacular exhibit, Magna Carta: Law, Liberty and Legacy is winding down as well. This is the final month to catch a glimpse of the famous 800 year old document before the exhibit comes to a close on September 1st.

    Final Month to See British Library’s Magna Carta Exhibit
  • Which Baltic God/Goddess Are You?

    Have you ever wondered who were/are the last pagans in Europe? Baltic Gods were never forgotten. Lithuanians have so many however who from the main ones do you resemble the most – Perkūnas, Žemyna, Vėlinas, Ragutis, Milda or Laima?

    Which Baltic God/Goddess Are You?
  • The Viking Age: A Reader

    I can’t recommend it highly enough for anyone who is interested in Vikings, especially those who are creating classes or researching. Good primary source collections are hard to find, and this is definitely one of them.

    The Viking Age: A Reader
  • Places to See: Arundel Castle

    I spent a soggy, but fun filled Sunday in Sussex at Arundel Castle during International Joust Week July 21-26th. Even without the jousting, the castle is well worth the visit if you are looking for a quick day trip outside of London. History of Arundel Castle The castle’s history dates back to the Norman period.… [Continue Reading]

    Places to See: Arundel Castle
  • Ten Castles that Made Medieval Britain: Stirling Castle

    Stirling Castle is intimately entwined with the history of Scotland and her monarchy, a significance which is recognized and presented throughout its numerous components with admirable vigour.

    Ten Castles that Made Medieval Britain: Stirling Castle

Medieval News

Winchester medival Jewish trail map

Explore the Medieval Jewish Trail in Winchester

Visitors to Winchester have a new way to explore the English city’s medieval Jewish past. Winchester City Council and the University of Winchester have launched a new city trail telling the story of this community.

Dunluce Castle - photo by Micu Radu

Festival of Archaeology at Dunluce Castle today

Dunluce Castle in Northern Ireland will host a family friendly archaeological event on Saturday 25 July from 10.30am – 4.30pm.

magna carta exhibit - photo courtesy Kent County Council

Magna Carta exhibition shows off newly found copy of charter

Earlier this year a copy of Magna Carta dated to the year 1300 was discovered in Kent. This rare copy now goes on public display as part of an exhibition starting today at the Kent History and Library Centre in Maidstone.

Parker on the Web

Parker Library on the Web turns 10-years-old, announces improvements to medieval manuscripts database

Parker Library on the Web has become one of the leading digital medieval manuscript sites since 2005, when an early prototype was first demonstrated. Now, ten years after the prototype, and six years after the release of the first production version, work has begun on Parker on the Web 2.0.

oldest quran manuscript - photo courtesty University of Birmingham

Qur’an manuscript discovered in England could be over 1400 years old

Experts at the University of Birmingham believe they have discovered a manuscript of the Qur’an that is at least 1370 years old, making it the oldest known copy of the Islamic Holy Book.

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Medieval Articles

Byrhtnoth - photo by Andrew Barclay / Flickr

Hostages in Old English Literature

Hostages in Old English Literature examines the various roles that hostages have played in Anglo-Saxon texts, specifically focusing on the characterization of Æscferth in The Battle of Maldon.

Photo by Geraint Rowland / Flickr

Can We Talk About Religion, Please? Medievalism’s Eschewal of Religion, and Why it Matters

With this essai I would like to advocate for a reconsideration of religion as an essential topic for medievalism studies.

viking ship sail

Early Norse Navigation Tools

These two pieces of navigation equipment were at the time as cutting edge as the iphone, the ipad, and the GPS is today. They allowed the sailors to navigate large stretches of open water without sight of land and successfully reach their destination as safely as possible.

John Linnell - The Harvest Cradle 1859

Lughnasa and Lammas: Summer Holidays Lost and Found Again

For centuries two holidays were celebrated by neighboring peoples on the same day. The people were the Celts and the Anglo-Saxons, and their holidays were Lughnasa and Lammas respectively.

Wine in the 16th century

‘Wine-contamination’ of the Adriatic: Examples of punishing wine smugglers from medieval Dubrovnik

Strict import-export regulations of the medieval Dubrovnik (Ragusean) authorities included also a rather rigid control of the wine trade.

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Medieval Videos

Margot Fassler lecture

Hildegard’s Cosmos and Its Music: Making a Digital Model for the Modern Planetarium

The work reported on in this talk is a collaborative effort involving forces performative, scholarly, and technological. Because of the way Hildegard describes her understanding of the cosmos in the treatise Scivias, the model unfolds in two acts.

Engraving depicting Maria Prophetissima from Michael Maier's book Symbola Aurea Mensae Duodecim Nationum (1617).

Maria the Prophetess: Mother of Alchemy

One of the first female scientists, Maria, the Jewess also referred to as Maria the Prophetissa and Maria, Sister of Moses, whose inventions and designs of equipment are used in laboratories today.

crash course vikings

Crash Course: Middle Ages

Watch the medieval history videos created by Crash Course

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Medieval Books

The Tapestry by Nancy Bilyeau

BOOK REVIEW: The Tapestry by Nancy Bilyeau

Joanna Stafford, our intrepid ex-Dominican super sleuth is at it again. This time, she’s hurled straight into the midst of plotting and deception at Henry VIII’s court.

with bended bow

With a Bended Bow: An Interview with Erik Roth

Erik Roth presents a comprehensive examination of the archer and his weapon in a time when archery was both economically and militarily vital to the security of England, based on the study of mediaeval writings and period artefacts.

Charcoal kiln - photo BY Katrin Kania

The Middle Ages Unlocked: Starting a Fire

One very good example of misconceptions we have today about a bit of boringly daily life in medieval times is fire – or, more specifically, lighting fire.

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Medieval Movies & TV

predator dark ages

PREDATOR: Dark Ages

Watch medieval warriors take on the ultimate hunter in the galaxy in PREDATOR: Dark Ages!

knights-of-badassdom-review

Movie Review: Knights of Badassdom

When the people behind Knights of Badassdom wanted us to promote the film, I asked if they wanted us to review it. They said no. After watching it, I can understand why.

macbeth trailer fassbender

Macbeth trailer released – first look at Michael Fassbender’s upcoming film

This adaption of Shakespeare’s tragedy stars Michael Fassbender, with Marion Cotillard portraying his wife, Lady Macbeth.

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More Medieval History

by Master Jean de Mauléon (c.1535)

Cracking down on illegal gambling in Medieval Livonia

Just like their modern day counterparts, medieval cities had to deal with their own criminal underworlds – the sex trade, gambling, and violence taking place within their walls. At the International Medieval Congress, held earlier this month at the University of Leeds, these issues were explored as part of session #706: Perceiving and Regulating Vices.

Yeoman Warder speaking to a group of school children at the Tower of London. Photo courtesy of Represent London, lotterygoodcauses.org.uk.

Imprisonment, Execution and Escape: Medieval History and the National Curriculum

The final talk in Sesson #1041, Engaging the Public with the Medieval World, looked at what English children are being taught in school. How much medieval history is in the new programme that was released in September 2014? Megan Gooch, Curator at the Historic Royal Palaces breaks down the English system for us in her paper, ‘Imprisonment, Execution, and Escape: Medieval History and the National Curriculum’.

To pardon or to punish? Children enjoying live stopped interpretation at the Tower of London. Photo courtesy of Past Pleasures.

Making the Castle a Home: Creating an Immersive Medieval World Using Live Costumed Interpreters

How does the use of unscripted, adaptive, historical interpretation boost the tourist experience? Right on the heels of our look at the Tower of London’s visitor engagement, we heard a paper from Lauren Johnson, Research Manager for Past Pleasures, the oldest historical interpretation company in the UK who educate and entertain the public at historical sites, museums, on stage and and on TV.

The White Tower of The Tower of London. Photo by Medievalists.net

‘But Where are the Dungeons?’: How to Engage the Public at the Tower of London

A talk about how historical sites, like the Tower of London engage the public. How to handle visitor expectations, what do people come t see and how to tell history in a captivating but accurate manner.

Medieval Children - Omne Bonum - Royal 6 E.VII, f.67v (det). Wiki Commons.

The Experience of Growing Up in Medieval Society

This session (#508) was one of several at Leeds devoted to exploring childhood in the Middle Ages. Our presenters talked about the stereotypes of adolescence, and what the coroner’s rolls revealed about the deaths (and lives) of medieval children.

iron king droun review

Book Review: The Iron King, by Maurice Druon

Touted by George R.R. Martin as the original Game of Thrones, Druon’s series has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity recently, and can be found in major bookstores.

New Medieval Historical Fiction

What’s New in Medieval Historical Fiction

Learn more about these books: See the Sister Fidelma mysteries Wikipedia entry Visit Gear-Gear.com, website for the authors Kathleen O’Neal Gear and W. Michael Gear The Buried Giant review – Kazuo Ishiguro ventures into Tolkien territory – review by Tom Holland in The Guardian ‘The Invention of Fire’ is a thrillingly written 14th-century murder mystery […]

Star map for May 19, 1536. Created by Hunter S. Jones

Mystery, Secrets and Magic

When I decided to put pen to paper for a Tudor historical fiction story, I had no idea what I wanted to write. The subject has been analyzed and romanticized for five hundred years. What could I do that would be an original slant on this iconic subject matter? After having a look around I noticed that no one appears to have the exact moment of her execution. From there, the story began to slowly develop and present itself to me.

minecraft - photo by downloadsource.fr/Flickr

Minecraft and the Middle Ages

It is one of the most popular video games ever created. Moreover, educators are finding ways to use Minecraft as a teaching tool, and one that could be ideal for learning about the Middle Ages.

beowulf hinds

Gareth Hinds’ Beowulf

Dark and visceral, the graphic novel version of Beowulf created by Gareth Hinds is considered to be one of the most successful adaptations of the Old English tale.

An enormous model of Westminster abby. Made from Lego . Photo by Les Chatfield from Brighton, England

Using LEGO to teach the Middle Ages

Here are a few ideas that teachers can use to teach the Middle Ages with LEGO

Teaching Out of the Box

Teaching Out of the Box: Creating a Lesson about the Black Death

A team of teachers is challenged to produce an imaginative and exciting lesson on medieval history inspired by objects given to them in a box.

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